There are two types of Pliè. Demi and Grande. Demi means 1/2 bend and Grande means full bend. Two properly demonstrated pliè are shown in this picture above. In a demi pliè the heels never disconnect from the floor. A grande pliè will, however allow the heels to disconnect from the floor, In order to recover, the dancer must push his/her heels down to reconnect with the floor. The only exception to this will be in 2nd position, where the heels will stay connected to the floor at all times. Remember, the core body needs to feel like an elevator; going straight down and straight up.
- The Descent: Begin by stacking your axis/atlas (See; Take Spotting Out of Your Neck) directly on top of you tailbone. Execute the pliè by starting to go straight down (like an elevator) until the back of your heels are stretched. All the time remembering to keep your shins perfectly aligned over your toes.
- Continue to lower your body down (as demonstrated in the picture above) until you’ve created a diamond shape with your legs.
- The Ascent: Begin by pressing your heels down to reconnect with the floor so you return to your demi pliè. Do not allow your body alignment to be compromised in the process.
- While keeping your turn-out, straighten your knees completely.
Pliè is the true beginning of understanding “Turn-Out”. Simply completing 4 correctly executed pliè in each position a day will strengthen your turn-out. Pliè is the true foundation for all dance steps. A better pliè creates a better dancer. So practice, practice, practice. But remember: Practice does not make perfect. Practice makes consistent. So practice correctly!!!